Residency and In-State Tuition

This website contains excerpts from the University Tuition & Fee Manual’s policy on Residency (chapter IV). The entire Manual is available for review here.

In general, to qualify for the resident tuition rate at a senior college based on residence in the State of New York, a student must:

• Be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or in a qualifying immigration status; AND
• Have continuously maintained his/her principal place of abode in the State of New York for a period of at least twelve (12) consecutive months immediately preceding the first day of classes; AND
• Have a bona fide intention of living in New York permanently.

The CUNY Residency Form and the listings of documents that determine eligibility are available here. Submit the form and all documentation to the Admissions Office, room L.64, 524 West 59th Street, New York, NY 10019.

The deadline to submit the CUNY Residency Form and all required documentation is on or before the last day of finals in the semester for which resident tuition is being sought. The college will not make residency determinations retroactively and will not issue refunds to students even in cases where they would have qualified for the resident rate if they had submitted timely documentation.*

*Students requesting resident status for tuition purposes are expected to be aware of the requirements necessary to qualify for State residency set forth in Part I of the Tuition and Fee Manual. Students are also expected to be aware of the resident and non-resident tuition rates, which are available on the CUNY web site, among other places, so that they know if they are being charged the correct tuition rate when they received their tuition bill.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q- I am 19 years old, went to high school in Pennsylvania, and lived in Pennsylvania all of my life with my parents. My parents still live in Pennsylvania but I moved to New York City after being accepted to John Jay College. How can I get in-state tuition after living in New York for 12 months?
A- To be designated a New York State resident, a student whose parent(s) or legal guardian(s) reside out-of-state must present evidence that he or she meets CUNY’s residency requirements set forth in above, AND EITHER

(a) that he/she is financially independent from his/her parents. Proof of financial independence must be documented. Factors taken into account in determining financial independence include, but are not limited to: whether the student is taken as a dependent on parents' federal and state income tax returns; whether the student is employed and the amount the student earned relative to expenses; the extent of financial support received by the student from parents or guardians; and other sources of student income OR

(b) that he/she, despite being dependent on out-of-state parents(s) or legal guardian(s), has changed his/her domicile, i.e. the place that he/she has a bona fide intention of living permanently, to New York State. Such a showing must be made by clear and convincing evidence. Students who claim that New York is their domicile are expected to have a New York State driver’s license or New York State issued identification card dated a minimum of twelve (12) months prior to the start of the semester. In addition, a student is expected to submit documentary evidence indicating he/she has changed his/her domicile to New York, such as the following:

1. evidence that the student has filed a New York State resident income tax return for the previous calendar year;
2. evidence that the student resided in the State of New York for a significant period of time for other-than-educational purposes prior to attending CUNY;
3. evidence that the student resides in property owned by the student or his/her parent(s) or legal guardian(s) in the State of New York;
4. evidence showing that the student uses his/her New York address as his/her sole address of record for all purposes including on health and auto insurance records, bank accounts, tax records, loan and scholarship records, school records, military records, leases and similar kinds of documents.

Q- I am 25 years old. Do I need to provide documents that I am financially independent from my parents?
A- No. Students aged 24 and older are considered independent and are not deemed to have the same state of residency as their parent(s) or legal guardian(s). But students aged 24 and older still must qualify for in-state tuition by being a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or in a qualifying immigration status, and have continuously maintained his/her principal place of abode in the State of New York for a period of at least twelve (12) consecutive months immediately preceding the first day of classes as well as having a bona fide intention of living in New York permanently.

Q- I moved to New Jersey with my father but I went to high school in Manhattan because my mother lives there. Am I eligible for in-state tuition?
A- Yes, provided that you are a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or in a qualifying immigration status (or undocumented), and meet one of the following conditions: 

• The student has attended an approved New York high school for two or more years, graduated, and applied to attend CUNY within five years of receiving the New York State diploma.
• The student has attended an approved New York State Program for General Equivalency Diploma (GED) exam preparation, received the GED issued within New York State, and applied to attend CUNY within five years of receiving the New York State GED.
• The student was enrolled in CUNY in the Fall 2001 semester or quarter and was authorized by CUNY to pay tuition at the resident rate. Thus, a student who attended CUNY in the Fall 2001 semester and paid the resident rate does not have to satisfy either condition 1 or 2 above. 
 
A student meeting one of the three conditions set forth above does not need to prove residence in New York State in accordance with Sections above. The student can be a resident of another state, such as Connecticut or New Jersey, or can be an undocumented or out-of-status immigrant. However, students who meet one of these criteria but do not have lawful immigration status must file an affidavit (i.e., a notarized statement) with CUNY stating that they have filed an application to legalize their immigration status or will file such an application as soon as they are eligible to do so.

Q- I am an F-1 international student. I have been living in Brooklyn for 3 years. Am I eligible for in-state tuition?
A- No. Students in F-1 status do not qualify for in-state tuition. F-1 is on a list of visa categories for non-immigrant aliens who do not qualify for the in-state or resident rate of tuition.